When to get involved in the Republican party again?
E. J. Dionne makes the case in the Washington Post that the November could see a surprising victory for the Democrats. I have to agree with many of his observations (though the conclusion is at least colored by a degree of optimism), and I think there's a good chance that the election will swing more Democratic than most people think right now.
For me, I will be glad to be rid of George W. Bush. But I also come from Republican roots. The main reason I consider myself an Independent today is because for the last 20 years the wingnuts have been pushing the moderates out of the Republican party. In fact, my mother, whom I consider the very model of a modern moderate Republican, was thinking of switching to the Democratic party because she felt no longer welcome in her local precinct caucus.
That was in 1990. Then she was asked to run for state legislature, won, and distinguished herself over 12 years, as a moderate Republican. In the mean while, though, the party has only gotten more ideological.
But let's suppose the voters give the Republican party a big spanking this year. Massive defeat, down in flames, that kind of thing. The Democrats control the White House and both houses of Congress (farfetched? Maybe).
That might be just the time for moderates like myself to get active in the party again. Such an event would probably make the Republicans think long and hard about centrist positions and the "big tent," and marginalize the rabid right. Just like the defeats in 2000 and 2002 made the Democrats value electability over purity.
An intriguing thought. I would like to be more active politically, if I could only find a home. Perhaps in December, I'll have the chance to help make one.
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